Can introverts hustle?

Self Care

Hustle. It seems that word has been everywhere in the last couple of years. Being of English extraction when I first stumbled on the word being used in blogs etc I thought “Why am I being told to walk fast? What has that got to do with business?” I quickly realised my mistake after a visit to Urban Dictionary. It means simply; anything you’ve got to do to make money.

If you’re on Pinterest it’s likely you’ll have seen the motivational typographic quotes…

Hustle quotes

L-R Hustle Hard Girl by Planeta 444 on Etsy | Good Things Come to Those Who Hustle by Designs by Maria on Etsy | Dreams Demand Hustle by Chris Olsen on Society 6.

Am I the only one that can’t tap into this message? Why am I averse to it? Are you?

The ‘hustle hard, believe anything is possible’ philosophy.

Asking these questions reminds me of a chapter in Garance Dorés book ‘Love x Style x Life’. She writes about meeting style photographer Scott Schuman (The Sartorialist) who challenged her to think bigger. She had a blog that featured her illustrations, photography and writing but saw it as a hobby, not a business. Schuman declared she needed to believe that anything is possible. Garance writes, “To me, it was like meeting America.”

The ‘hustle hard, believe anything is possible’ philosophy is very American to me also. I was lucky enough to visit Los Angeles many times to promote my previous project, a fashion/style website. I learned quickly that the simple act of having a quiet drink in a bar of an evening is, in LA terms, a networking opportunity. My first visit I had delivered to my hotel room a bag full of DVD’s and CD’s that I received from someone I met in entertainment production, and bottles of wine from another person I met who ran the PR for a Californian winery. I naively thought they were lovely women I happened to sit next to in a bar and that we were just having a nice chat over a drink.

Nope. Although to be fair, one of these meetings did evolve into a friendship.

Any social interaction is a potential business connection, and you should always have a business card ready to hand out, be prepared to follow your new acquaintance on Instagram and Twitter immediately, and you MUST perfect your ‘elevator pitch’. Connect! Connect! Connect!

For an introvert, hustling is exhausting simply because you have to be ‘on’ anytime you are in public. You are the face of your enterprise and you mustn’t let it down with either your appearance or your attitude. You must be prepared to promote it and move it forward at any given time.

In essence, the hustle is all about noise and honestly, I don’t like noise. I’m also of an age where I am resistant to doing things on anything less than my terms. Perhaps that puts me out of the race altogether?

I can’t help but ask myself, is it possible to achieve my goals without having to fundamentally change my personality? I’m inclined to answer yes simply because my own goals are set with my personality and limitations in mind. To be honest, I don’t have a goal that I don’t firmly believe I can achieve. So I guess I have adopted at least part of the American philosophy.

Perhaps I can hustle part-time?

Over to you! What is your view on introverts and hustling? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

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